Why do atheists become atheists?
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13-01-2015, 07:41 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Sooner or later, everyone is exposed to the idea that it is possible to not believe in a god, or at least act like you don't. Some people look into this new viewpoint and become atheists. Some people recoil like a cat hit by water and scream at the position until it goes away, remaining theists.

Sometimes, I wonder why that is. What is it that causes some people to accept that their faith is wrong, while others who see the exact same evidence, can't accept that?

Anyone else think about this? Got any ideas? All I can think of is basic open-mindedness.

Edit: I guess it's be better to say "What makes atheists go back to atheism" since it's the default before indoctrination. Or, "What makes atheists stay atheists if they weren't indoctrinated but exposed later".

I was born an atheist and evolved into a never-theist.
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13-01-2015, 07:47 AM (This post was last modified: 13-01-2015 07:59 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Sometimes, I wonder why that is. What is it that causes some people to accept that their faith is wrong, while others who see the exact same evidence, can't accept that?

Because it's just the cool thing for goth and emo kids to do. At one time is was just dying your hair, and wearing a black trench coat, and now it's to label yourself an atheist, and not wear deodarant. It's just a way from goth-emo kids to say they are unique, and special, and to rebel against their parents, while listening to Ethiopian death metal.

In fact there have been several scientific studies revealing just this, which can all be found here:

https://encyclopediadramatica.se/Atheism
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13-01-2015, 08:00 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(13-01-2015 05:15 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
  • Reading about Greek / Roman mythology before or at the same time as learning about the Jesus cult;

That certainly was a factor in my never believing. I also was interested in dinosaurs very early and read a lot of stuff about how and when they lived and how they died out. That led to a basic understanding of the age of the earth and the process of evolution. With all the reading, Jebus was just another myth from the start; it was just "our" myth and it wasn't even anywhere as interesting as many others.

I was also in a pretty secular area so, while church was something people did on Sunday morning, it wasn't mentioned the rest of the week. When I was dragged there I just had to behave and I'd be left alone so I could use the time to plan out what I was doing the rest of the day. I think I blame church for teaching me to tune out speakers and my short attention... squirrel!

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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13-01-2015, 08:38 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
I didn't chose to be one, it was an evolution.

"If we are honest—and scientists have to be—we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality.
The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination."
- Paul Dirac
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13-01-2015, 08:48 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(13-01-2015 07:47 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Sometimes, I wonder why that is. What is it that causes some people to accept that their faith is wrong, while others who see the exact same evidence, can't accept that?

Because it's just the cool thing for goth and emo kids to do. At one time is was just dying your hair, and wearing a black trench coat, and now it's to label yourself an atheist, and not wear deodarant. It's just a way from goth-emo kids to say they are unique, and special, and to rebel against their parents, while listening to Ethiopian death metal.

In fact there have been several scientific studies revealing just this, which can all be found here:

https://encyclopediadramatica.se/Atheism

Sure, you keep telling yourself that and using absurd sources to confirm your bias.

There were no scientific studies on that link.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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13-01-2015, 09:14 AM (This post was last modified: 13-01-2015 09:18 AM by Bows and Arrows.)
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
I could never seem to get my simple questions answered, I was lucky enough to not know any fundamentalists growing up. We didnt attend church, but I remember my sister giving me a book of childrens stories of the bible. But it didnt explain things in enough details for me and just led to more qustions that no one had answers to.

like the logistics of Noahs ark, just how did he stop the wolf from eating the bunny? To many 'how did he really do that?' questions and no answers. None...nobody knew.

Then one day I figured out where babies come from, and someone mentioned family tree back to adam and eve, and then I remembered incest with Noah and his clan, and figured that Adam and Eves kids must have made babies who had sex with their brothers and sisters and suddenly I Was grossed out and thinking "WTAF! no...I'm not part of that" (I do realize our ape ancestors probably had some incest going on, but they were apes, not humans making up incest stories for shits and giggles)

and it was confirmed for me, religious people are just fucking nuts, there are no answers to my questions.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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13-01-2015, 09:46 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
I can't speak for others, but it wasn't something I became, it's something I realized I had always been.
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13-01-2015, 10:13 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
For me, it was necessary for my life to hit rock bottom. Without scraping the bottom of the barrel, no amount of evidence would've made me reconsider my theism. This is the power of the holy holy.

So I was determined to stick it to god. It helped that it made sense.

8000 years before Jesus, the Egyptian god Horus said, "I am the way, the truth, the life."
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13-01-2015, 10:40 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Sooner or later, everyone is exposed to the idea that it is possible to not believe in a god, or at least act like you don't. Some people look into this new viewpoint and become atheists. Some people recoil like a cat hit by water and scream at the position until it goes away, remaining theists.

Sometimes, I wonder why that is. What is it that causes some people to accept that their faith is wrong, while others who see the exact same evidence, can't accept that?

Anyone else think about this? Got any ideas? All I can think of is basic open-mindedness.

Edit: I guess it's be better to say "What makes atheists go back to atheism" since it's the default before indoctrination. Or, "What makes atheists stay atheists if they weren't indoctrinated but exposed later".

I'll reiterate a point explained in "Biblical Nonsense" by Jason Long

It is a balance between 2 things, degree of religious indoctrination (low, med, high) and intelligence (low, med, high).

If someone is highly indoctrinated, they are unlikely to ever change their opinions away from theism, regardless of intelligence level. Indeed, those that are highly intelligent and highly indoctrinated may be even more entrenched in their views because they are convinced they have reasoned through it.

Someone who is of at least moderate intelligence and low levels of indoctrination, are unlikely to ever become very religious (not necessarily atheist mind you).

It is in the middle ground were you can get some movement/change of opinion one way or the other. Average intelligence and moderate indoctrination means they could go either way essentially.


From there, you are asking what the catalyst is that pushes someone towards religion or away. And that can be highly varied. For me, it had some to do with the death of my aunt when I was younger, and religion not really helping. It was a little bit about 9/11 and the realization of the dangers of religious extremism. It was a youth minister shaming his dead grandmother for committing suicide, a story he told to kids and teenagers to shame them into believing in god. These things led me to look for my own opinion on religion, which meant learning more about religion, and not just christianity. That blew the lid off after a few years of inquiry and discussions with other people.

For some other people around me, the things that have swayed them have been the attitudes and actions of christians. It is seeing the bigotry formed from ignorance and religion. It was listening and watching someone be two-faced. It is the realization that religion doesn't make anyone a good person. But it does provide a convenient excuse.

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13-01-2015, 10:50 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Sometimes, I wonder why that is. What is it that causes some people to accept that their faith is wrong, while others who see the exact same evidence, can't accept that?

Same reason some kids start questioning the shit out of Santa when it stops making sense and others look to make excuses for Santa and to give him new, previously unstated powers. They were told something by someone they trust.

(Obligatory Penny Arcade)
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(12-01-2015 06:39 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Anyone else think about this? Got any ideas? All I can think of is basic open-mindedness.

It's all cognitive dissonance. People handle these things differently. It actually has a lot to do with why there are so many Christian sects these days. Every split is a result of someone parsing some aspect of the religion differently than someone else.
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